My Friend

Hello, my never far away friend. We’ve walked, ridden, sailed, flown and sat together through thousands of miles. Perhaps the only consistent presence in a life filled with people, experiences, noises.  When not a co-star, always a background player. Waiting in the wings for the opportunity to steal the scene.  A constant reminder of what is coming. The inevitable. The certainty. Never in doubt.

You prefer late nights or early mornings. These are your times to shine. I’ve always wondered what your full voice sounds like, you prefer to whisper. We have our own language, you and I. A look or sigh from you, and I don’t need to wonder what is on your mind.  A well placed eye roll or shoulder shrug and I have no doubt where this conversation is heading.

I’ve not known you to be wrong – ever. I’ve often wondered if you ever have doubts of your own.  You seem so sure – so confident. As if a statement or thought from you creates.

You love history. We have this in common. It makes sense, given that history is what we share. Mine and yours, forever entangled. Each step and choice of my life hopelessly mired with yours.

Perhaps your greatest skill is the well produced play back.  You have a talent for constructing films with just the right lighting, background music, ominous soundtrack to produce your desired effect. The reminder of past misdeeds, missteps, misunderstandings. These are the strokes with which you create your masterpiece.

“Remember when you did this?

Remember when you said that?

Remember how you didn’t fix this?

Remember how you broke it?

No?

Let me show you.

That scene, right there – remember now?  Let’s see it again. ACTION!

Given that performance, how could your current scene play out any differently?  You are you, after all.  This is what you do.  This is how it always is. Embrace it. Play the role. Type casting pays well. Why fight it?”

There is a sick reassurance in your reminders. No surprises.

My friend, my constant companion. The one who stays when all have moved on. Though I should want you to leave, I’m not sure who I would listen to if you were to go. Your voice is as familiar to me as my own.

“Don’t go too fast.

Don’t try too hard.

Don’t risk.

It never works. Remember?  Remember me?  I’m always here. I will always be here. I am you.  I know the truth.  I know the fraud.  I know what you hide, and I make sure others know it too.  I’m a master at the strategic leak. Heaven forbid I let you get away with that! Who do you think you are?”

I wonder if you were to leave, would I have to go as well?  Are you my shadow?  Sown on and visible whenever any hint of light begins to shine on my being? Though you prefer night to talk, you are seen in all your glory in the light. Your shape growing larger and larger as the sun shines brighter and brighter on me. Ever looming. Ready to overtake.  Confident that even though a cloudy sky may obscure you, the sun of success will always shine again – at least for a moment – and then there is you.

My friend.

My tormentor.

My failure.

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Wife, Mommy, Historian, Wannabe Writer.

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